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Albizu Elevao
(Elevated Albizu)

2006
Acrylic on Burlap
72" x 39 1/2"

Ay como lo escupieron
Como lo empujaron
Como lo llevaron a crucificar


(Oh how they spit on him
How they pushed him
How they took him to be crucified)

-excerpt from "El Todopoderoso", Hector LaVoe, Willie Colón

The bright light, representing the celestial light as seen in most depictions of the crucifixion of Jesus is actually a reference to the radiation experiments conducted on the father of Puerto Rican Nationalism Pedro Albizu Campos, by the US government. These doses of radiation were secretly administered to him in the form of bright white or multicolored lights that would flash in his cell, while in federal prison and in his hospital room. Albizu suffered from excruciatingly painful burns, attacks and seizures as a result of these experiments. The perspective of the painting is meant to place his legs and feet in the foreground so that the viewer can see the burns. Many photographs exist of Albizu's burns, particularly on his legs and feet. For further research on this issue, read "Yo Acuso y lo que Paso despues" by Pedro Aponte Vazquez or visit the Center for Puerto Rican Studies in New York to research in the Ruth Reynolds papers in their archives.

Visit the other portraits of Pedro Albizu Campos in the political gallery and the ARCHIVOS SUBVERSIVOS gallery for more information on the father of Puerto Rican Nationalism.



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